Beautiful earth from on high, far above the ravages of the coronavirus

March 29, 2020
Signs of spring over the northern Himalaya.

Beautiful earth from on high far above the coronavirus is the theme of these images and profound words from Boeing 747 pilot Christiaan van Heijst.

Christiaan uses his superb window on the world to remind us of its beauty in these terribly difficult times.

Christiaan takes up the message…..

“It might not always be visible or laid out plainly for our eyes, especially now most of us are in isolation or working ever so hard, but we live on such a magnificent blue marble.

“Especially these stressful days with uncertainty and fear spreading more swiftly than the virus itself, I thought it’s a good reminder to realize there are so many positive things out there as well.

SEE: World’s largest plane back in the skies.

READ: Qatar making flying safer than ever. 

“Flying cargo, I am still one of the fortunate ones to witness our world from this elevated perspective. Thunderstorms, mountains, cloud formations, stars and rainbows alike; they are still there.

“In this shot (above), a thin veil of rain, merely a short-lasting curtain beneath some convective clouds, produced such a humble marvel of nature. While my 747 crosses between this shower and the sun, it’s light gets refracted into all the colours of the visible spectrum. Visible only for me for a short moment, being in just the right place and time, but very real.”

Christiaan’s next shot (above) was taken over the Atlantic.
He takes up the story:
“It’s a beautiful day over the Atlantic. Puffy cumulus clouds, fair winds and a bright sun give it a dream-like atmosphere when seen from above.
“While nearly everyone is trying to stay inside their homes and limit social contacts, I find myself looking at the world high above from my 747. Far away from the distress and uncertainties that live in so many hearts right now all over the world.
“And while economies are coming to a grinding halt, businesses closing down and borders closed, the views from up here remains exactly the same.
“Clouds grow and dissipate over the oceans, meteors streaking in the midnight sky and the northern lights glow and dance as they always did. A vivid reminder of how the world keeps on turning, with or without pandemic and economic crisis.

“Hold on people, we have faced much worse in the past and this too shall pass. Stay inside for as far as practical, read some good books, be nice to each other (not too nice by the way, or we’ll have a colossal baby-boom in 9 months from now) and take one day at a time.”

The final picture Christiaan calls quite simply “Bright moon above the clouds far away from the troubles of daily life.”

Again his thoughts are inspirational;

“When I’m up here I feel like I’m in a different world. A realm without discussions, ethics, economy, worries or misunderstandings. Just the laws of nature and nothing else. And of course, a handful of planes and pilots few and far in between.

“Many societies have been turned upside down in the last few weeks. Countries in lockdown, overloaded hospitals and empty streets. An invisible and silent enemy spreading like a wildfire across the world, given total freedom by open borders and globalistic schemes to spread at an unprecedented pace.

“The price of our short-sightedness and greed? Or a timely and valuable lesson to prevent something much worse in the future? I prefer the optimistic attitude without being idealistic.

‘When I look up at my beautiful moon and the millions of stars far away, I realize once more so how evidently vulnerable we are. I’m not talking about our planet or something as elusive and nebulous as Earth’s various climates; she will adapt and survive long after we’ve left or disappeared altogether.

“I’m talking about us as a species and our societies. After decades of peace and prosperity, many of us have grown used to a world without too many serious issues, having never seen a war or real crisis up close except through our 55” TV.

“And it takes just one tiny virus to bring it all to a grinding halt. A good reason for honest reflections on many levels.

“In the meanwhile, I find it essential to keep sharing the beauty of the world from up there. Scenes that invite deeper thoughts and contemplations and literally puts things in perspective. Where we came from, where we are now and where we are headed.
As individuals, but mostly as a species and society. A small balance of beauty and hope against the fear of uncertainty some of us feel in these trying times.

“Good luck and stay safe, we’ve been through much worse in the past.”

You can follow Christiaan on Instagram here: @jpcvanheijst

Editor-in-Chief: Wonderful words from Christiaan to reflect on. He is right we – well our parents and generations before them – have been through far, far worse. Stay indoors if you can and stay safe.